Happy Halloween, everyone! We hope your morning is already full of tricks, treats and frights beyond the everyday existential horrors we all currently face in 2020!
Being as it is Official Spooky Day 2020™, we decided to borrow a fun idea from our friends at And the Valley Shook (thanks, guys!) by asking the Rock M masthead: Which opposing player scared you the most when they faced Mizzou?
Going into the SEC Championship game Tre Mason already had over 1,300 yards on the ground and 18 touchdowns in an offense that was schematically wonky and featured a killer ground game. Missouri’s defense was stout, but the Tigers had struggled with rushing attacks that had a mobile quarterback and Auburn was maybe the most maxed out version of that.
Mason went on to run the ball 46 times for 304 yards and 4 touchdowns. It’s the equivalent of seeing Jason coming, running and hiding in a house, then slowly turning around and realizing he beat you there and now has you skewered against the wall.
— Nate Edwards, Football Editor
When we as a society look back on our collective past and recall some of the great monsters to ever walk the face of the earth, I’m afraid we don’t give Connor Shaw the respect he deserves. He’s a villain of the highest order, and I am still haunted by him to this day. Every morning when I wake, I whisper to myself, “Connor Shaw is out there and by god, he must be stopped.”
Shaw only faced off against Missouri twice in his career at Columbia East, but holy hell did he make those two performances count. During Mizzou’s entry year in the SEC, Shaw picked the Tigers apart for a modest 249 yards and two touchdowns... on 20/21 passing!!!!!!! And is it just me, or is 11.9 yards per completion kind of insulting when you’re going to complete 20 of 21 passes? Like, c’mon man, who are you fooling? Just stack 400 yards on me and send me home.
To make matters worse, Shaw pulled off his most ghoulish feat the following year, reviving himself from the dead in the fourth quarter to lead South Carolina to a 27-24 victory, spoiling Missouri’s chance at an undefeated record headed into the SEC Championship. He wasn’t quite as efficient this time — only 20 for 29 — and he threw for 48 fewer yards. But I’ll be damned if he didn’t throw for three touchdowns this time, including the “back-breaker” in overtime. And he did it all nursing a sprained knee. Connor Shaw, wherever you are, I want you to know that you ruined my Saturday night on October 27, 2013, and I plan on never forgiving you for it. You’re a scoundrel.
— Josh Matejka, Deputy Manager
One HAS to be Tre Mason, doesn’t it? [Editor’s Note: Yes, see above.] The 2013 Missouri Football team was one damn game away from playing for the National Championship, but had to stop a high-powered Auburn offense to do so. Easier said than done. We knew it was going to be a tall task to contain Tre Mason, but an absolute nightmare unfolded.
The other is Benny Snell, who of course went 3-0 against Mizzou.
2016 — 38 carries, 192 yards , 2 TDS.
2017 — 20 carries, 117 yards, 2 TDS
2018 — 19 carries, 67 yards
Just like Mason, Snell dominated Missouri, but this was three years in a row, making it all the more frustrating against a Kentucky team that simply had Mizzou’s number at the time. Every year I was convinced Mizzou had a chance to knock off UK, until I remembered Snell was still there.
— Sammy Stava, Staff Writer
How about y’all? Who is the scariest player you ever saw Mizzou face? Sam Bradford? Ndamukong Suh? Michael Dickson? Let us know in the comments, or hit us up on Twitter at @RockMNation.
Stay safe out there! Happy Halloween!